ते वा एते रसानांरसा वेदा हि रसास्तेषामेते रसास्तानि वा एतान्यमृतानाममृतानि वेदा ह्यमृतास्तेषामेतान्यमृतानि ॥ ३.५.४ ॥
॥ इति पञ्चमः खण्डः ॥
te vā ete rasānāṃrasā vedā hi rasāsteṣāmete rasāstāni vā etānyamṛtānāmamṛtāni vedā hyamṛtāsteṣāmetānyamṛtāni || 3.5.4 ||
|| iti pañcamaḥ khaṇḍaḥ ||
4. These colours [red, etc.] are the essence of all essences. The Vedas are the essence, and the colours are the essence of the Vedas. These colours are the nectar of the nectar [the Vedas]. The Vedas are the nectar [and therefore eternal], but the colours are the nectar of the Vedas.
Te ete, these [the red and other colours]; vai rasānām rasāḥ, are the essence of the essences; vedāḥ hi rasāḥ, since the Vedas are the essence; teṣām ete rasāḥ, these [colours] are the essence of them [the Vedas]; tāni etāni vai amṛtānām amṛtāni, these [colours] are the nectar of the nectar [the Vedas]; hi vedāḥ amṛtāḥ, as the Vedas are the nectar [or, eternal]; etāni, these [colours]; teṣām amṛtāni, are the nectar of them [the Vedas]. Iti pañcamaḥ khaṇḍaḥ, here ends the fifth section.
Honey has been shown to be in different directions. This is just to stimulate our interest in seeking the essence of everything. The essence of everything is the Vedas, because through the Vedas we attain immortality. The term Vedas here means the Vedic ceremonies. Through these ceremonies we attain only relative immortality—that is, a long life, but a life that must end sooner or later. The expression ‘essence of the essences’ means that results which follow from the ceremonies are better than the ceremonies themselves. They are better, but they are short-lived. The implication is that we must not stop there.